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Features October 2019 Issue

Treats for Tricks

To seal the deal for a dog who complies with your verbal cue when you’re teaching a trick, reward not only with a food treat but also enthusiastic praise. Phrases like “Atta, Girl!” Or “Yea, you did it!!” go a long way.If the treat’s not delicious enough, he’s not going to keep doing the trick for you.

Treats for Tricks

How to use food — and flattery — to get your dog to comply.

To train your dog to follow cues and perform various tricks, you’re going to need food treats — and lots of them, especially when the trick is new or when your dog is a puppy and is getting the hang of learning in general. You might need to give four or five treats in quick succession in order to solidify the follow-through in your pet’s mind as she repeats the move you’re trying to teach. But how does that square with the standard advice not to give your pet more than 10 percent of her calories as treats, since treats are not part of a dog’s healthful diet and can lead to nutrient imbalances?

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